Mackay Hospital and Health Service Board fired, Administrator appointed

The entire board of Queensland’s ailing Mackay Hospital has been sacked by the state government after nearly 100 women complained about the care they had received.

Health Secretary Yvette D’Ath announced the decision Tuesday and said an administrator had been appointed.

Ms D’Ath said a “cultural shift” was needed across the hospital after she was “unsatisfied” with the board’s response to the negative treatment of patients.

“I made this recommendation to the Governor of the Council because I believed it was in the public interest that all members of the Board be fired,” said Ms. D’Ath.

“Under the circumstances, I am not satisfied with the board’s ability to implement the report’s recommendations, including the cultural change needed across the hospital.”

The board received an important cause notification on Sept. 30 after a report found “systematic failures” in the hospital system.

The shocking report was delivered in September after more than 80 women were questioned about “subpar clinical care” at the facility.

It found that many women had suffered “long-lasting physical and psychological damage” after receiving substandard care at the facility.

In at least three cases, “inadequate” care led to the death of a child, the report said.

The board has been given until November 4 to respond.

Ms. D’Ath has appointed Karen Roach, who has over 35 years of healthcare management and leadership experience, as Administrator.

“Ms. Roach was interim chief operating officer of Metro South and Sunshine Coast HHSs and interim CEO of Townsville HHS,” she said.

“She has qualifications in Nursing and Midwifery and was awarded the Centenary of Australia Award for services to Nursing and Health Services in Queensland.

“The skills Ms. Roach brings to this role will be critical in restoring confidence to Mackay Hospital.

“I am confident that Ms. Roach will be on good terms with Special Counsel Dr. Robert Herkes and the hard working staff at Mackay HHS will work together to deliver improved services.”

Originally published as Mackay Hospital and Health Service Board dismissed, Administrator appointed

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